My Big Fat Greek Adventure – Part II

Saturday evening we went to dinner with my Yaya’s side of the family – the Capuanous – who are originally from Naples, Italy. Yaya was born in Aegan, and the family later moved to Patras. My great Grandmother married in to the Koussouri family. My Yaya, Zoe Koussouri, was one of eight siblings. I don’t know the exact order, and my spelling is most likely incorrect, but I intend to stay in touch with the Koussouri’s and fill in all the branches on the family tree. The siblings are: Maria, Aspasia, Nionia, Zoe, Pinio, Thanasis, Mitsos, and Leonidas.

Now here’s where it gets a little confusing. From everything I’ve learned, the siblings of your parents are your Aunts and Uncles. However, when you shake a Greek family tree the cousins of your parents become your Aunts and Uncles. Go figure. So when my Mom’s cousin Paul called the house, he said to me, “This is your Uncle Paul.” I thought he was confused, but later in the week the family reinforced his claims.

At dinner Saturday night were my Uncle Pablo (Paul) Koussouri – the son of Thanasis – and his wife Elenie, Uncle Costas Koussouri – the son of Lionidas, Elli Koussouri – the widow of Petros Koussoui (Paul’s brother), Aunt Ivy Gianoukou – the daughter of Nionia, and my Mom – the daughter of Zoe. We had a very nice meal at “ Paradiso” an Italian restaurant near my Uncle Costa’s home and right across the street from my Aunt Elli’s shop . I laughed and laughed and learned about the people I come from. The Capuanou’s are very intelligent, hard-working, humorous people. My thanks to Uncle Costa for buying dinner and to my Uncle Paul for bringing us all together.

After dinner we made a surprise visit to my Uncle Costa’s home. There we met his wife Lela, a sweet-spirited woman, and her helper Marika, a beautiful, cheerful young woman. My Uncle Costa has a unique hobby. He creates exact replicas of ships. His work is flawless and incredibly detailed. My Uncle Costa is retired from the Greek Navy.

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